Would You Kindly Be My Valentine?

Christopher Livingston


Coming to you LIVE from the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, it's time to celebrate Valentine's Day with Rapture's number one radio dating programme: Would You Kindly! Free from the tyrannical oppression of government broadcasting standards and hosted by the founder of Rapture, Andrew Ryan, Would You Kindly challenges one contestant to choose from three viable paramours (sitting unseen behind a screen) by asking them a series of romance-based questions. So, inject your plasmid of choice, spider-walk to your favorite spot on the ceiling, telekenetically turn up the volume on your radio, and enjoy the show!

Good evening, my friends. This is Andrew Ryan. I hope you are enjoying your Valentine's Day celebration. Tonight I wish to remind each of you that RAPTURE, the utopian paradise I founded at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, is still home to your FAVORITE DATING PROGRAMME! WELCOME to another broadcast of... WOULD! YOU! KINDLY!


I came up with this programme on my own , without the man in Washington , without the man in the Vatican , without the man in Moscow , to distract you from the fact that my perfect city is filling with water and populated by shrieking lunatics and giggling vampire children.

*hesitant, scattered applause*

Here is how the show works. A young woman shall sit here and ask questions of three viable paramours. She will not be able to gaze upon their visages, nor they hers. At the end of the programme, she will select her favorite and they shall enjoy a romantic excursion to Rapture's most expensive, least water-damaged restaurant, where they will sip tonics and dine upon whatever they can find in the trash bins. That's right, a woman CHOOSES, a viable paramour ACCOMPANIES HER TO DINNER! Let us meet our candidate. Please introduce yourself.

Hello! My name is Faith Connors. I live in a futuristic dystopia where I work as a courier, delivering messages for the revolution by running over the rooftops and using acrobatic maneuvers known as parkour .

And what a striking woman you are! Slim and athletic, you appear to be the product of superior genetic material! I, for one, would not kick you out of my luxurious penthouse bed for being a filthy socialist parasite!

Thank you. I guess.

I would, however, attack you with SWARMS OF STINGING BEES. Now! Let us meet our first paramour! Would you kindly sign in!

Alfred. Come in, Alfred. I've infiltrated Ryan's dating show. They're asking me for some sort of introduction. Access the bat computer to find an appropriately witty response, and contact me when you have it.

He appears to be speaking into some sort of portable longwave radio device. Paramour Two? Would you kindly introduce yourself!

My name is Corvo Attano, but I'm also known as The Masked Felon! I'm a shadowy supernatural assassin in Dunwall, which is also a dystopia. See, we already have something in common!

MASKED FELON! You WON'T get away this time.

What? What are you talking about?

I WILL find you, Masked Felon!

I'm right here. You're sitting next to me.

SILENCE! Paramour Three! Would you kindly sign in!

Paramour Three is not in his chair, but instead appears to be staring at us from across the room and through a window. Very well! Candidate, begin your questioning!

Okay. Paramour One, give me your best pick-up line!

Oracle. I need to you access the mainframe of a popular dating website and compile a list of the most successful pick-up lines. Contact me when you have them.

It's sort of rude to talk into your communicator when I'm talking to you.

Yeah, man. Really.

It's ALL OVER for you, Masked Felon! Did you REALLY think your plan would WORK?

Fellow, what is your deal?

There is NO ESCAPE, Masked Felon! I WILL FIND YOU!

Again, I'm sitting right here. Our knees are almost touching.

Okay, Paramour Two: Describe your perfect date.

Well, it starts with us moving quickly and silently over rooftops and ledges to avoid being seen by patrolling guards.

I'm listening.

Then, we slip down to street level and into my favorite cafe, where I subdue everyone to give us some privacy. Non-lethally, of course!

Nonlethal takedowns? You're speaking my language.

Then, I summon a swarm of rats to eat all the unconscious bodies, and my magic mechanical heart tells me all about you in a voice only I can hear!

Ooh, you lost me at the end there. Nice try! Paramour Three, describe our romantic first encounter.

You are ssstanding in a test chammmber, Miss Con-nors. It is fill-ing with radioactiiive waste. I am watch-ing you frommm... a catwalk.

That's... really weird. But continue.

Our eyes mmmmeet, and time seems... to stand still. This is be-cause I am actually stop-ping time.

I can stop time, too! If the time-stopping thing works for you, I'm all over it .

Your TIME TRICKS won't save you, MASKED FELON!

Guys, shut up. Paramour Three, go on, please. Time is stopped, we're gazing at each other, and...

I approach you. I take your hannnd in mine. And then I ssstore you in di-mennnsional stasis for fff-fifteen years.

There's the horrifying final detail I was waiting for. Out of curiosity, what happens fifteen years later?

Then, it's rise and shine, Miss Con-nors.  Wake up and... smell the omelette.

Well. I guess it's nice that you like to cook breakfast.

He seems to have disappeared. He did not even leave behind the sweat of his brow, which, HERE IN RAPTURE, he would be ENTITLED TO!

I'm starting to think this was a terrible idea.

And you are free to THINK that in RAPTURE, where you cannot be slapped around by GOVERNMENT MUSCLE! FREE from the BOLSHEVIK POISON fed to the masses by ROOSEVELT to--

Calm down. Okay, Paramour One? What do you look for in a woman?

Oracle. I need--

Forget it. Paramour Two, same question.

Physically? Oh, someone about your height, your weight, and with a healthy cone of vision, like yours. And three coins in her pocket.

So... wait, you can see me? You can see through walls?

And then some! I bet Paramour One can't top that!

Female subject is conscious and sitting. Solid skeletal structure. No weapons. Pulse is normal.

So you can both see through walls. You're both just staring at me. Isn't that against the rules?

Rules? Here in RAPTURE, game show hosts do not fear the CENSOR, and are not bound by MORALITY!

Sounds like we've actually got a lot in common, Paramour One.

The GAME IS UP, Masked Felon!

Ugh. Maybe you two peeping toms should just go to dinner with each other. Um... hello?

They appear to have choked each other unconscious.

Swell. Just tell me the quickest roof out of here and I'll be on my way.

And that brings us to the end of WOULD YOU KINDLY! Please enjoy this promotional clip from our next episode!

Did I ever tell you... what the definition... of romantic is? Romantic is when I give you a dozen roses and a box of candy... over and over again... and expect nothing in return. That. Is. Romantic. A florist told me that. I thought he was bullshitting me, so I shot him.

I think I am going to pass.

About the Author
Christopher Livingston

The first PC game Chris owned was Choplifter in 1982, and since then our staff writer has played at least three other games. He has a love/hate relationship with Early Access survival games and an odd fascination with the lives of NPCs.

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